Why the College Football Playoff Should be Eight Teams

Zack Tobias, Heather Williams, Adam Positano

With another college football season coming to a close, several worthy teams are jockeying for a coveted spot in the final four. Once again, many one loss teams will be snubbed from championship contention because of the current flawed format of the College Football Playoffs. It’s year two of this new format and we are once again seeing how one loss can seal a team’s fate. For the second year in a row, one loss Baylor is on the outside looking in while one loss Alabama is once again ranked in the top four. It is a shame to see year after year teams with equal or better records get denied the same chance at t

he title.

To combat this problem college football must expand to an eight team playoff format. It will only boost revenue for the NCAA and participating universities and TV networks. Last year, all three games set college football TV ratings records. Ohio State’s victory over Oregon scored an overnight rating of 18.5, making it the most watched event in cable TV history. As a frame of reference, that’s more than double the ratings of the top episodes of TV’s most watched show, “The Walking Dead”. By playing seven games, advertising, merchandise, and ticket sales should significantly improve. ESPN paid $1 billion for rights to televise the CFP so the network needs to earn its money back.

As the current format stands, players know that one loss is a death sentence and teams as a whole give up hope on the season because they know their chance at the championship is over. If the format were expanded to eight teams, these one loss teams would still have something to fight for and  you would see teams playing competitively until the end of the season, instead of throwing in the towel after they get their first loss of the season.

The four team playoff does not give smaller conference teams a fighting chance at championship glory. The playoffs are dominated by power conferences such as the SEC, Big 10, ACC, Big 12, and Pac 12.  

Although the playoffs is much better than the previous Bowl Championship Series system, it is not perfect. If the NCAA knows what is ultimately best for the sport, they will expand to eight teams. It will boost revenue and make the season more competitive throughout. No more teams and their fans need to hang their heads in shame after not getting a chance at something they deserve.